The Concept Prototype
The concept of Pac-Mamea was to build a true multi-game system, capable of using a wide range of controls. I wanted to be able to play all my favorite games without making sacrifices, such as having to play Tempest or Star Wars with a joystick. I wanted balltop sticks, fighter sticks, flight sticks, spinners, trackballs, and an analog yoke control.
I also knew that I wanted to have a machine that looked nice. So I had to devise a way that I could have all those controls, without destroying the design with one big, cluttered "Franken-panel". I had heard about people who had used removable, or swappable control panels, but living in an apartment, storage space for extra panels was out of the question.
So I hit on the idea of a 3-sided, rotating control console. I quickly put together a wooden prototype to test the concept, which you can see in the following, low quality photos.... The commentary below was written at the time the prototype was built, so many of the plans I had laid out were soon to change.
Panel one is set up for classic 4-way games and 6-button fighting games. The Ms. Pac-Man replacement stick fits into a countersunk area on top of the panel, and the plate will be concealed by a printed overlay and 1/16" Lexan. It is used for Pac-Man, Dragon's Lair, Street Fighter, etc.
Panel two is set up with a 3" trackball, a Discs Of Tron-style up/down spinner, and two 8-way trigger joysticks. The trackball enclosure is flush mounted, and will be concealed by a printed overlay and 1/16" Lexan. It can play games such as Tempest, Major Havoc, Missile Command, Tron/Discs Of Tron, 720, and Battlezone.
Panel three is set up for analog flight games. It features a genuine Star Wars yoke, refitted with new springs and microswitches, interfaced thru a MS Dual Strike USB, and works EXACTLY like the original. Not yet installed are the F-15 Talon analog flight stick, and a throttle control. It is used for analog flight and racing games such as Star Wars, S.T.U.N. Runner etc.
All buttons and joysticks are interfaced thru a single 28-input I-Pac. In final form, the CP would fit entirely within the cabinet, with the 2 unused panels concealed by the front access panel. The tan extension in the back (with the start buttons) will be 50% shorter than it's shown, and it hinges upward to allow the control changeover. The circular end plates lock into position by hitch pins inserted thru the 2x4 side posts. Average changeover time between panels on this configuration is under 10 seconds.
The information on this site is for the purposes of education and entertainment only. The owner of this site makes no warantees as to the accuracy of the information, and takes no responsibility for any damage or injury sustained due to the use of information herein. The design of the Pac-Mamea cabinet and all photos, computer renderings, drawings, schematics, and printed information relating to such are Copyright © 2002-2004 Robert Meyers. No ownership of other copyrighted material found on this site is implied.